Types of Soils – Which One is Good for Potted Plants?


Are you interested in growing potted plants at your home garden and are not very sure about which soil to choose? Well, then, this article discusses about the types of soil, where to find them and what is best suitable to your plants.

It is very important to choose the soil that has required nutrients and helps your plants grow better. The table below will help you know about different types of soils, their pros and cons, tips to identify, etc.

Types of Soils
Type of Soil Telugu Name Advantages Disadvantages Places to Find Identification
Sandy soil Isuka mannu Provides good air supply Cannot hold water and minerals River banks and coastal areas Take soil in your palm and turn it, if soil flows freely without sticking to your palm with less mud left on your palm, it is sandy soil.
Silty soil Shila Renuvu Holds good amount of water, minerals and gives good air supply. It is best for all kinds of plants -Nil- Found under the water bodies Take soil in your palm and rub with other palm, it gives you smooth sensation in touch. It leaves dirt in your hand.
Clay soil Bankamannu Holds more water than any other soil Requires more fertilizers, do not offer air supply. Water gets logged in the pot Found near water bodies and agricultural areas It sticks to your hands and gives you lot of dirt.
Loamy soil Erra mannu It is regarded as perfect soil for gardening, since it holds enough water and minerals, with good water drainage. Any kind of plants be grown -Nil- It is found near the rivers, lakes, hilly areas It gives you every shape you want, when you add water to it. Its colour ranges from black to red.
Peat soil Nalla mannu It is organic in nature, it is best when used with the sandy soil as a mix Causes water logging Found in marshy places, where the area is water logged for many years with continuous decomposition of plants and animals Appears as smooth as a powder with very few grainy stones dispersed in it.
Chalky soil Kshara mannu This soil is good for plants which grow in acidic soils Soil is alkaline in nature, it dries soon, requires large amounts of water and fertilizers Mountains, river banks and barren lands It looks like chalk powder and colour varies from yellow to white.

Each has pros and cons. An ideal soil facilities the plant with optimal water retention, proper drainage, aeration, etc. Among all the soil types loamy and silty soils have those desired qualities that can help plants grow quickly and stay healthy. However, as silty soil is not available in Hyderabad, we will discuss only about loamy soil, in this article.


Loamy soil (Erra Mannu)
Loamy soil, by its own nature, is a combination of sandy, silty and clay soils. Thus, it has characteristics of each of them – good air supply, nutrients and water holding capacity.

The texture of the soil is grainy and thus allows it to hold more nutrients when fertilized and this forms the source of minerals to plants for a long period. One advantage of this soil is, it is easy to work with because it is not sticky and is suitable for any kind of plants. Contrary to the popular misconception that loamy soil appears red, its colour varies based on the proportion of sandy, silty and clay soils in it. If loamy soil has large amounts of organic matter it appears dark, if it has more amount of silty soil then it appears red.

This soil is available in almost all the plant nurseries in Hyderabad at affordable price. You can get a tray of soil for just Rs. 10-15. A 25 kg bag (cement bag size) will cost you around Rs. 60. Besides loamy soil, nurseries are providing ready-made soil for pots, which comes as a blend of organic compost and loamy soil. The cost of ready-made soil is Rs. 120 per bag.

You may also like to read:
Fertilizers for Your Potted Plants

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